This morning the five scenes seemed like quite a lot. Perhaps it isn’t a modest aim at all.

I woke thinking I should give thought to my “archives”—a lofty term for the boxes of papers in my basement. Might a library take them on? Now—in that between-novels stage—would be the time to at least inquire. Of course I expect rejection. One, I’m not a lit star, and two, I imagine that the days of libraries having much money for this type of thing might be over.

I must also finish preparing for my reading in Eganville tomorrow night. Yesterday I steamed my gown, and organized my props (wig, poke, bumroll). Today I will transfer the edits from my US reading copy to my Canadian edition. I thought of simply changing the covers, but the Canadian is slightly larger. I might read from the US edition, but without the cover. Or with the cover, and talk about the two designs. It’s a wonder I get anything done at all with all this dithering.

I’ll type and print out my talk onto cards: the ones I used throughout the US are now scribbled over. Too, I want to say something special. I’ve done this countless times by now, but in the three weeks since my last one in California, I feel I’ve never given a reading before. Too, a presentation before friends and neighbours is always more stressful than one before strangers.

It’s also time to give thought, shape and title—that’s the hardest part—to my talk for PEN in San Miguel de Allende next spring. I’m glad that they are so well-organized, that they are working on promotion so far in advance, but it’s certainly far, far from my thoughts right now. I’ve set an end-of-month deadline for myself.